Curried Chataigne

Preparation info

  • Difficulty


  • Serves:

    6 to 8

Appears in

Sweet Hands: Island Cooking from Trinidad and Tobago

Sweet Hands

By Ramin Ganeshram

Published 2018

  • About

This curry, like most vegetable curries, is popular for Hindu holidays such as Paghwa and Diwali, or prayer meetings, where vegetarian fare must be served. Chataigne (pronounced Shah-type) is the French word for chestnut and the Trinidadian name for breadnut, a starchy tree fruit that is similar to breadfruit in taste and family, but closer to chestnut in appearance. Also called jackfruit or by the Indian name katahar, chataigne is available in most Asian, Indian, and Caribbean markets. Canned jackfruit in sweet syrup is available as well and is a popular dessert in East Asia. I have also seen frozen Thai jackfruit pulp but the fruit is generally shredded and seedless.


  • 1 3-pound chataigne (jackfruit), peeled and cut into chunks
  • 1 tablespoon canola oil
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 4 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • ½ Scotch bonnet pepper or 1 small red chili pepper, finely chopped
  • 3 tablespoons Trinidad curry powder
  • 2 teaspoons coarse salt
  • 2 cups coconut milk


  1. Using your hands, break the chataigne into smaller pieces and remove the seeds. Peel the covering of the seeds and discard, setting aside the seeds.
  2. Heat the canola oil in a large sauté pan and add the onion. Fry the onion until translucent and then add the garlic and sauté until just starting to lightly brown.
  3. Add the chili pepper and fry 30 to 40 seconds more. Add the curry powder and fry, stirring often, until the curry begins to release its aromas, about 30 to 60 seconds.
  4. Add the chataigne pieces and seeds and mix well so all the pieces are coated. Add cups of water and the salt and lower the heat to low. Cover and simmer for 10 minutes.
  5. Stir in the coconut milk and raise the heat in order to bring the mixture to a boil, then reduce the heat and simmer for 20 minutes more, or until the chataigne flesh and seeds are fork tender. Serve with roti.